From starting a community Halloween celebration tradition to making the city swimming pool more accessible for the physically disabled, elementary school students in Minnesota have hundreds of thoughtful ideas for making their cities better places to live.
The League of Minnesota Cities’ (LMC) second annual “Mayor for a Day” essay contest gave students an opportunity to share their ideas while creatively thinking about services that city governments provide. Many of the students who wrote essays picked up entry forms at the League’s “Cities Matter” booth during the Minnesota State Fair last August.
For the 2014 essay contest, students were asked to choose one of three services—parks and recreation, fire, or police—and answer the question, “If you were mayor of your city for a day, what would you do to make one of these services even better than it already is for the people in your city?”
The League received about 440 essays from 4th-, 5th-, and 6th-grade students representing nearly all areas of the state. From those entries, three winners and three honorable mentions were selected. Winning entries were chosen based on creativity, originality, and legibility. Winning essay writers received a plaque and a check for $100, and their entries are reprinted here. Honorable mentions received a certificate (see names at right).
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